Thursday, June 17, 2010

Oh, the places you can go!

c. David Grim (taken 6/20/09)

One thing I really didn't do as my work year was winding up was give substantial thought to where I might want to travel this summer. Last year my major wishlist destination was Coney Island for the Mermaid Parade. That just happens to be this weekend, but I didn't make any specific plans. It looks like it's going to simply pass me by this go 'round. I don't really know how I could have topped that experience anyway, short of painting myself, donning a costume and marching away. Hell, I even got to shake hands with Joe Coleman. You can't beat that.

Aside from that wild trip to the Big City, I also got on a Bed and Breakfast quest. I never gave much thought to staying at independently-owned lodging (other than a friend's couch in my dirtball days), so I didn't know the wide range of options. For $100 a night you can find a decent place to stay with a little character. And then, if you're willing to spend $150-200, you can relax in luxury. The best place I stayed at last year (and perhaps ever) was this one. It wasn't just the king-sized bed and two-person hot tub that made it special either. It was the lodge-style grandiosity of the common areas- the "great room" with wraparound balcony, the old fashioned elegance of the billiards room, and the rustic coziness of the bar. Plus the man in the full-sized bunny costume in an inn that looks like it belongs in Twin Peaks. Ok, it was Easter, but still...

I also made my first trip to the Hocking Hills, which is kind of like the Poconos of Ohio except that it lies in the Southern region. It really is a nice little weekend stint for 'Burghers and I'm surprised I haven't heard of more folks traveling there from Western PA. I found a castle-themed B & B that I can (without reservations) recommend. My GF and I stayed in the Woodcutter's Cabin (a name that I find humorous for no readily apparent reason) and the proprietors were thoughtful enough to include a couple of goofy medieval style costumes in the closet.

A lot of these travel experiences are not the type that you just stumble on randomly, so who knows what this summer will bring me. You can count on one thing for sure- if I run into anything especially remarkable, you'll read about it here.

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